Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Immigration thoughts - Wednesday

On December 8, 2005, Peggy Noonan asked some of the questions I've been pondering
What does it mean that your first act on entering a country--your first act on that soil--is the breaking of that country's laws? What does it suggest to you when that country does nothing about your lawbreaking because it cannot, or chooses not to? What does that tell you? Will that make you a better future citizen, or worse? More respecting of the rule of law in your new home, or less?
I suggest you read it. Noonan is no anti-nativist; she freely credits the immense benefit that the ability to immigrate gave to her ancestors, and, by extension, to her.

Like the majority of Americans, I come from a long line of grateful immigrants. If some of them tried to enter today, they might have a very long wait, if they qualified at all. Nonetheless, I favor tighter controls over the current situation, which lets the lawbreakers in more readily than the rule-abiders. Think of it - you are increasing the number of people in this country who think that inconvenient rules are to be ignored. We already have way too many of those kind of people.

I'll close with a last excerpt from Noonan:
Our elites are lucky people. They were born in a suburb, went to Yale, and run the world from a desk. Which means this great question, immigration, is going to be decided by people who don't know what it is to sleep on a bench. Who don't know what it is to earn your space, your place. Who don't know what it is to grieve the old country and embrace the new country. Who don't know what it is to feel you're a little on the outside and have to earn your way in to the inside. Who think it was without a cost, because it was without cost for them.

The problem with our elites as they make our immigration policy is not that they have compassion and open-mindedness. It is that they are unknowing and empty-headed. They don't know, most of them, what others had to earn, and how much they, and their descendents, prize it and want to protect it.

I found the reference to the Noonan post via John Hudek, at Common Sense and Wonder.

Tags = Immigration

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